Tuesday, 24 July 2007


I’ve just finished reading Tina Brown’s riveting The Diana Chronicles. “Not that stale old fairy tale?” I hear you cry. But this retelling of it is unputdownable.

What comes through is not merely the self-delusion, but the sheer unrelenting nastiness, of all the cast – including the People’s Princess herself. Yes: she had wondrous charisma, and empathy with the suffering; she was a head-in-clouds Romantic [according to her step-grandmother, Dame Barbara Cartland, “the only books she ever read were mine and they weren’t awfully good for her”]; and - fatefully for her and for the Royal Family - she was a walking incarnation of the old saw “hell hath no fury like a woman scorned”. Having refused to fit into the fossilized conventionality of the Windsors, and having been semi-ejected by them, she aspired to let some fresh air into the monarchy for its own good, and did not quail from behaviour which, from their perspective, resembled that of Samson and Delilah combined.

It is clear from the book that the Wales’s marriage broke down because of Charles’ unshakeable determination to stick like glue to Camilla Parker Bowles through thick and thin. It was this, and not Dame Barbara’s knicker-ripping verdict that it was Diana’s refusal to “do oral sex”, that broke the fairy-tale romance. For Diana, Camilla was the wicked witch who turned her glass coach into a pumpkin. She proceeded to wreak relentless revenge. Whether the marriage, without her ghastly end, could in time have been resurrected is one of those fascinating “might have beens” of history.

Tina Brown has trawled through all the published material with a fine-tooth comb, and has talked to many hitherto untapped sources, both on and off the record. It is this which gives her book its air of definitive behind-the-scenes knowingness, and embellishes it with some pricelessly funny vignettes illuminating the unequalled snobbishness, cluelessness, and on frequent occasions bitchiness, of our ruling claque.

Superb holiday reading!


lavenderblue said...

Profile: Tina Brown
The return of the media queen

What others say: 'A tyrant. Joseph Stalin in high heels with blonde hair from England.' American novelist Jamaica Kincaid.

Thank you for the insight into this probably best selling book,
Anticant !

I will not read it.
I am sick of bloody Diana and sick too of the f/wits that make up the 'monarchy'.
I had respect for Cartland - not for her writing,never touched it, on a par with 'Does my bum look big in this' and other dreadful chick-lit.Cooper included.
My respect for her was in her sheer belief of herself,her very being.
Pure snobbery,I know, but,oh my !, wasn't she good at it !
Apparently when she died she had a simple humanist burial.......also she had donated land to the Gypsies'
I admire that.
Still wouldn't read one of her books though.

To each their own.

lavenderblue said...

Far,far better to me is to read your witty version of it !
Now THAT I love x

anticant said...

Well, then, you'll miss a treat. But you haven't read the Bible either, have you?

zola a social thing said...

Yes I have.
Oh sori cannot answer for laviB nice and LaviB lovelleey, loveli.
All I want is the truth somewhere....

The Burrow Beadle said...

All I want is a Snug somewhere
Far away from the cold night air
And Lavvyblue with auburn hair
Oh wouldn't it be luvverly?

zola a social thing said...

Sounds like Charlie boy trying to get into the knickers AND THE WEBS of a Parki-sparky-Bowles.
Sori - just webbing.

Emmett said...

THE Wretched thing about the royals is that here you have a load of perfectly unexceptionable people who, through no fault of their own, are born into this wretched circus instead of a tower-block in, oh, Hull or somewhere.

IT'S A lovely tradition & all that, Cock, but if I were Prince of Wales, when the time comes I should move Heaven & Earth to not only be not crowned myself, /but/ also to shut down the whole horrid business....

I Expect that /that/ would be a 'constitutional crisis', though, and he positively would not be let do, by the intourist directorate /and/ the jammy bastards who need something irrelevant to whinge about!

HOW Come the Dutch have such awfully good luck with /their/ royal family, and the devils never seem to come up in the gutter-press?

SAY What you will, the human cost of this unhappy comedy is on all fours with being born into chronic debility, caucasian in China or sent as little humanist baby, into the family of a gang of christians.

THE Main thing that props up this expensively-subsidised misery from outside is the illiterate & decerebrated oohing & aahing especially of /texan/ & /floridean/ ignorant Americanos.

I Am just three months younger than Prince of Wales, and this is my sincere invitation to Charles W, to boot the ungrateful nasty bastards all in the arse, just bring along a couple of hundred thousand (leave all the rest strictly behind!), and we'll set up an icelandic pony-breeding operation.

AND, Kitchy-koo, you devils, kitchy-koo!

Grandpa Wook and Huldy & Ragna

Emmett said...

IN Other words, Tina Brown is another one of us who have /not/ made a difference.

zola a social thing said...

shit I'm off tonight to read a bit of Steinbeck ( i before e before after c and all all and all that).
Paulo Friere or Friere..........?
Shit ah dunno.

Emmett said...

Friere Tuck?

zola a social thing said...

Sori I am a reformed catholic.

trousers said...

Yes it may be my loss too, it may be a good book (and you do make it sound interesting, definitely - I like your take on it) but....its about Diana. I've already heard far too much more about Diana than I would have wanted to hear or tolerate over the space of several lifetimes.

Maybe a long, long time from now I could read it. But not until then, I don't think :)

butwhatif said...

Wasn't Babs Cartland buried in a cardboard coffin?

Either she was overcome with intense guilt, over all those wasted trees her life involved; or, along Emmett's line, she finally came to see through all the high society crap, getting back closer to her Brummie roots.

Of course my psychological insights above are nothing of the sort. They're nothing but cheap, easy speculation. On what makes these people tick. Which brings us nicely back to the ouevre of Tina Brown ...

anticant said...

Exactly how I feel about Islam, trousers.

zola a social thing said...

Does the Beadle of the Parish "feel about Islam ... Trousers?. We ask out of a duty of public decency.

the burrow beadle said...

Modest attire to be worn in the Burrow at all times.

No knicker waving.

By Order

zola a social thing said...


zola a social thing said...

By the way : Used to know a wonderful women who went by the way of "Tina".
In the insider-trading cirkuses she was known as "rubber-tit-Tina" but that has nothing to add to this blog.

I remember her well with a warm hand in a winter discontent.
Thanks Tina. ( we are old now and can forgive)

Emmett said...

WELL Now, it does seem to be a choice as between /either/ islam or Tommy Loy....

Emmett said...

[Aunty, sorry...I too, alas, am being swept in the warm fuggy efflatus of fetor & smut, to-day! Wook, CC, Morals-desk]